That’s the question we ask friends, neighbours, and ourselves every time another farmer chooses to end their troubled life. What would drive this smart, hardworking person to choose such a senseless end? Of the ten or more victims that I knew, that I called a neighbour; everyone was hurried along by added stress that in many cases was uncalled for. Some thought that their performance on the farm was not up to expectations of their parents or other family members. Some let problems with finances take control over better judgement. Sometimes interest rates skyrocketed far beyond what their financial advisors even thought of. Often the farm was liquidated after and many were surprised that the successful enterprise that the victim had built was worth far more than anyone had guessed. Sometimes an extreme drought or bad year could leave many farms scrambling in the fall for enough feed for the winter or not enough crop sales to pay back all the bills that are due.
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